Bringing alternative art to Bakersfield
New art gallery opens downtown for the edgier side of artistry! GRAND OPENING 6/7/08!
By Tammy Niemann, Bakotopia.com contributor
It all started with Bakotopia.com actually. I saw a blog about an art show at the 18th Street Gallery, back in March 2007. They were having their grand re-opening, under the new helm of Jenn Williams. She was finishing out the eight months left on the lease there.
My husband Mike always had a hard time getting his digital art accepted as art. The 18th Street Gallery was accepting all art, from any and all local artists. I told him to join in, as it sounded fun. He did, and from that point on he was hooked. So much so, that he rented a small space, to permanently display his work. The gallery was so warm and inviting, a great place to meet new friends, and just hang out.
Sadly, that was a short-lived venture. The lease ran out, and the gallery closed its doors a few months later. We were just starting to enjoy the local art scene, and getting to know everyone in it.
"Revised History" by Jenn Williams
Fast forward to May 2008, and the opening of The Underground Gallery and Studio, 1525 19th St., in the heart of the downtown Art District. It’s a showcase of all local artists, of all mediums. We have painters, sculptors, photographers, and, of course, digital artists. We opened in time for May’s First Friday, and the positive comments poured in!
We couldn’t have been happier.
Our first monthly show featured our great friend, and extremely talented artist, Jenn Williams. Without her, none of this would have even entered our minds.
Persian Summer Sun - Digital Art by Mike Niemann
On June 7 we’ll have our grand opening reception, with a group art show titled “Water Marks Part II,” a tribute and continuation of the grand re-opening at the 18th Street Gallery. Shows are open to all artists, whether they are members of the gallery or not. We have shows planned through the end of December, each with a different theme.
MAS Designs Ceramic Oddities by Susan Roussel
This is still a new concept for Bakersfield, and we are happy to be able to bring the “alternative art” scene to the forefront. We welcome those that would like to turn their hobby into something more. Great works of art belong on walls for others to see, not just on your workspace floor, in storage or in the garage. And, in addition to displaying great art work, we also offer a place to create those masterpieces. We have a studio area, with tables and chairs, for all gallery members to use.
Stop by anytime. We are a great place to find that one-of-kind piece for your newly painted living room or bedroom. Our doors are open Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and we’re closed Sunday and Monday.
Don’t forget about the downtown area First Friday events and our opening receptions. For more info you, call Tammy or Mike at 395-1600.
Story also printed in Bakotopia magazine, issue 28, 5-15-08